Following the conviction of Derek Chauvin on three charges in the murder of George Floyd, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi bizarrely thanked Floyd for “sacrificing” himself by dying on the ground beneath a police officer’s knee.
“Thank you, George Floyd, for sacrificing your life for justice,” Pelosi said, looking up at the sky as if speaking to Floyd in heaven, “for being there to call out to your mom—how heartbreaking was that?—call out for your mom, ‘I can’t breathe.'”
In remarks after the conviction of Derek Chauvin, Nancy Pelosi thanked George Floyd for "sacrificing” his life "for justice."
“Thank you, George Floyd, for sacrificing your life for justice, for being there to call out to your mom—how heartbreaking was that?" pic.twitter.com/I0qhEd7T8O
— Mother Jones (@MotherJones) April 20, 2021
The statement has already been criticized by many. Floyd was not a martyr willingly sacrificing himself for a cause. He didn’t want to die, and his death shouldn’t have been a prerequisite for police reform.
While the circumstances are different, it’s also hard not to hear Pelosi’s comment and remember President Trump’s statement, following the release of a promising jobs report, that, “Hopefully George is looking down right now and saying this is a great thing that is happening for our country.”
On Tuesday afternoon, other politicians spoke forcefully for more changes to policing, noting the verdict is good news but the work is far from done. Rep. Cori Bush (D-Mo.) said the verdict was “accountability, but it’s not yet justice.” Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison made a similar statement.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison: "I would not call today's verdict justice, however—because justice implies restoration. But it is accountability." https://t.co/6nN46Fosol pic.twitter.com/u2EHNl6qbN
— ABC News (@ABC) April 20, 2021